The Florida workers’ compensation system can be unfair to the injured worker in many ways. One such way is the calculation of the injured worker’s average weekly wage in determining how much the injured worker is eligible to receive in temporary total disability or temporary partial disability benefits. However, using the seasonal worker method to calculate the average weekly wage may be of benefit to an injured worker.
Typically, the average weekly wage (AWW) of an injured worker is calculated by looking back 13 weeks before the work injury and calculating 1/13th of the total amount of wages earned during the 13 weeks. But what if you are a waitress or factory worker and during the prior 13-weeks, your wages were reduced because business is slow during the 13-weeks prior and you could have been earning much more if you were not injured? That is where using the seasonal worker method of calculating your AWW may be beneficial.
If the injured worker can prove that the seasonable worker method would be more reasonable and fair than the 13-week method, the average weekly wage may be increased resulting in more Temporary Total and/or Temporary Partial Disability benefits. In order to show prove this, the injured worker needs to show that he or she is a seasonable employee. The term “seasonal” can be defined as being affected or caused by seasonal need or availability. Thus, an injured worker may need an attorney to help prove that their job falls under the category of a “seasonal worker.”
The Florida Workers’ Compensation law severely limits the benefits and rights of an injured worker in favor of the insurance companies and the business industry. Thus, it is important that you maximize your benefits the best you can within the confines of the Florida Workers’ Compensation system.
The workers’ compensation carriers have attorneys looking out for their best interest after your work comp injury–you should level the playing field by getting a lawyer to work for you after your workers comp claim. In most situations, there are no out-of-pocket attorneys’ fees unless there is a recovery for you. For a free case consultation with Attorney Matthew Noyes, click here. Attorney Matthew Noyes’ Tampa Bay personal injury law firm–Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes–has been caring for clients since 1955. Benefit from their experience.